Today is the first day of Underway Training! The day is filled with excitement and stress for everyone involved.

Out on deck the seniors are on the Fast Rescue Boat. They are heading out to a buoy that is about 300-500 yards off the starboard side of the Bear. They go to the buoy, and then conduct a series of turns, this is to simulate getting a person that has fallen overboard. Once they complete that they then head back towards the ship. At the same time the ship goes from a dead stop to forward and conducts a Williamson Maneuver, this allows the ship to double back to a spot quickly and efficiently. There is a lot that goes on with these evolutions and it is stressful for all of those involved.

Rescue boat

Smiling cadets

Out on deck some engineers were seen welding handles onto a hatch cover. The hatch cover is on the bow directly below the bridge. The handles needed to be reattached since the old ones were rusting away and were dented beyond use. The process to prepare the surface is time consuming and needs to be done with precision. This is because the hatch cover’s dogs are close to where the prepared metal is, and damage to these dogs could cause an issue with the watertight integrity of the vessel.

As Underway Training comes to an end we are met with a large pod of dolphins on out starboard side. Seeing the dolphins play in the beautiful water is a welcome sight. Off in the distance a whale was also spotted as it broke the surface with its fin, as if it were waving hello.

Established in 1929, California State University Maritime Academy is the only degree-granting maritime academy on the West Coast. Located in Vallejo, California, the campus offers undergraduate degrees that prepare students for careers in engineering, transportation, international relations, business, and global logistics. Cal Maritime also offers a master’s degree in Transportation and Engineering Management, as well as a number of extended learning programs and courses.